Listen Now: Fail Better with David Duchovny (featuring Sarah Silverman!)

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Listen to actor David Duchovy interview Sarah Silverman for his new podcast, Fail Better, from Lemonada Media!

On Fail Better, David, who has experienced both low and high profile failures throughout his life, explores the vast world of failure – how it holds us back, propels us forward, and ultimately shapes our lives. Each week, he will chat with guests like Ben Stiller, Bette Midler, and more about how our perceived failures have actually been our biggest catalysts for growth, revelation, and even healing. Through these conversations, he hopes listeners can learn how to embrace the opportunity of failure and fail better together.

On stage and off, Sarah Silverman is always evolving, whether that’s honing her standup routines or coming to grips with missteps in her past material. They reminisce about their mutual friend Garry Shandling. David also has the pleasure of talking to Sarah about the satisfaction of apologies and the struggle of forgiveness.

To hear more of Fail Better, head to:



Sarah Silverman, David Duchovny

David Duchovny  00:00

Well, I met Sarah Silverman, man, when was it probably 1995, 6, 7, right when I met Gary Shandling and Gary, I did the Garry Shandling show and he graciously invited me to play basketball at his court and Gary’s basketball game was kind of like comedian Fight Club. Because it kind of everybody wanted to be invited to it. But there was a there was, there was no way of knowing when you would be invited or if you’d be invited. Anyway, so I’m playing in that game. And there was only one woman who would play in the game. And it was this comedian, Sarah Silverman. And she was very quiet and a good ballplayer and sweet and what I remember mostly, I mean, not from that game, but I don’t know how much longer after he died this was, it was a couple of months, it might have been more, it might have been less. But we all decided, the extended family that Gary had made. Comedians and actors, we all decided we were going to go just have a memorial game, just go play on his court, nobody bought his house, it was still just sitting there. And we’re all kind of telling Gary’s stories to one another. And, you know, the weird thing about Gary is we still do that. Gary had this profound effect on people where he’s, he was just memorable. And, you know, to be in Gary’s house, it sounds a little weird, but to be in Gary’s house, and on that court, were everybody you know, that was kind of a Sunday afternoon activity where just where you think life is gonna go on forever, you know, and what what happened at the game was was was private. Here I am talking about it. I’m David Duchovny and this is Fail Better show where failure not success shapes who we are. Sarah Silverman is an award winning comedian. She’s also a spot up three from the corner, pretty reliable. The next good user, I think we share something which is an interest in doing many different kinds of expressions, through following our need to express our talent, whatever that is, through different modes of expression, and she’s done stand up comedy, musical sketches, scripted TV shows, political campaigns, dramatic movie roles. And years ago, we actually acted together in a movie Evolution movie directed by Ivan Reitman. And I love this interview, because, you know, I really got to know her better than I have during this discussion. And that was a real gift for me. Here comes Sarah Silverman.


David Duchovny  02:55

you should know that you’re in my top four stand ups of all time. Top four, definitely. You’re my favorite wing player from the Gary Shandling basketball.


Sarah Silverman  03:08

I miss him.


David Duchovny  03:11

Yeah, you played my ex girlfriend in Evolution.


Sarah Silverman  03:15



David Duchovny  03:18

I just want to ask you quickly about acting like your relationship to it, because I know you’re gonna poopoo it, but I thought you were great, and maestro, I know you’re gonna tell me it’s it’s not a big role or whatever, but it is a big.


Sarah Silverman  03:30

No, I’m just gonna say thank you.


David Duchovny  03:34

Okay, I’ll wait.


Sarah Silverman  03:35

No, I’m gonna say I mean, it wasn’t a bit.


David Duchovny  03:40

Here’s what I saw. I mean, I believed you in that period. And I thought you were just so wonderful to watch. And then when I was preparing to talk to you today, and I watched your old specials, and I see, I see you commit to those, you know, those little sketches that you do. You’re an actress. And I wonder, well, first of all, I wonder what that art form gives you that stand up doesn’t or does it, what’s the connection between the two?


Sarah Silverman  04:09

I love acting, I’ve always wanted to be an actor, but standup just took over my whole world. But, I do like the idea of doing odd jobs. And so that’s why I, you know, I’m kind of never really looking to do something that’s all encompassing for an unending amount of time because I love being able to do a little bit of everything. And that’s really where I’m happiest but I, you know, listen, when you see a special I’ve done, I’ve done that hour, for months on the road.


David Duchovny  04:49

It’s a play, it’s a play.


Sarah Silverman  04:51

It is and it’s you know, I’m a very slow honer and I work in inch, centimeter by centimeter so that it can feel in the moment and loose, but it’s not its act, a lot of it is acting you, you want to feel like this, you know, you don’t have said like, I remember having segways when I first started and it’s so silly because you’re speaking of that, this connects, you know, when the really the brain just goes from thought to thought to thought naturally and you can just embody that. And so there’s very much an element of acting because you want it to feel in the moment and you want it to feel real and that these notions are kind of coming to you in the moment. And the more prepared you are with that, the more you can be a little loose within the parameters of all that. But it is acting, but then I learned lessons like I did this Sarah Polly movie.


David Duchovny  05:49

Oh, she’s terrific.


Sarah Silverman  05:50

Oh, she’s so brilliant. It was like really one the first really dramatic, you know, kind of movies I was in. So in my mind, I had to say everything like this, you know, just like really real and small. And so there’s a scene where Michelle Williams and I are on a bus. And I’m talking like this, and she says, um, can you guys be louder? You know, be can Sarah, can you be loud enough? I’m sure. Michelle was, can you be louder? Because you’re like on a bus? And it’s? Oh, yeah, yeah, sure. And then I go and I’m like talking like this tell because in my mind, that’s what relaxing is that I equated real acting with just being like with that mumble core kind of like, talking was like such a such a broad lesson to learn, like such a silly lesson to have to learn but it was, you know.


David Duchovny  06:36

I really feel like you’re insulting me right now.


Sarah Silverman  06:42

I went to the David Duchovny school. No, your acting is totally.


David Duchovny  06:46

No, here’s the let me tell you something, when I was auditioning, auditioning, not getting anything. Like I would always get like when before I worked at all, I’d always get like, flat or more, no more energy, like, louder, or whatever. Like what you were experiencing? And I’m sure it was because I was tight, you know, part of it was tight.


Sarah Silverman  07:04



David Duchovny  07:04

But there’s always that thing that exists in your head, or that perfect movie, or that perfect performance, or maybe a perfect joke for you or whatever. That it’s all just partial that’s coming out. And that’s why I’m driven to kind of keep, like, you keep evolving, for me, it’s always okay, that’s gonna fail. Like I know, because that’s the way it goes. I mean, maybe the joke gets a laugh, maybe, maybe the movies ahead, maybe whatever, but I know, every time I go out there every time I do something, that it’s like, how am I gonna fuck it up this time, you know?


Sarah Silverman  07:41

Well, sometimes I’ll have a joke that I love so much, and I just can’t get it to work. And I either ultimately have to go, well, I’m wrong, this isn’t funny or I have to figure out what it’s missing. You know, maybe it needs a pause, maybe it needs some small word, maybe I need to explain more or explain less, you know, or less of a setup, it can’t hit the punch line can’t handle that much of a setup, or, you know that the opposite, but bombing is failure. But it also is, you know, in that failure, at its best is incredibly informative. Like you just don’t know what works until you you fail. Like us, you know, you’re sculpting something and and every failure gets you closer, ideally, but there are jokes that I I try for way too long, because I just completely believe in them, but they don’t work.


David Duchovny  08:40

What’s an example? Did you figure one? Figure one that’s been on the show for a while.


Sarah Silverman  08:46

Yeah, cuz I’m like in the middle of it all now, I mean.


David Duchovny  08:49

Low Yellow Pages, I love a legal pad.


Sarah Silverman  08:52

Yellow Pages baby, never heard that called that, that makes sense.


David Duchovny  08:58

What do you got there?


Sarah Silverman  09:00

I mean, it’s really embarrassing. It’s just like, this just says diarrhea and Frank. And then I have the gall next to it in parentheses, I wrote to myself more here. Yeah, maybe maybe flesh that out a little bit.


David Duchovny  09:20

Maybe a little more. You’re talking about bombing. So if you’re bombing, you’re not thinking in the moment. You’re not thinking, oh, this is really instructive, this is great.


Sarah Silverman  09:34

I try to because, you know, the worst thing as a comic is bailing, bailing on your set, meaning you just, you’re you’re just like we do in life, you know, you’re you’re thinking that you know what the audience is thinking. And then you’re psyching yourself out, they hate this, they hate me. I’m not funny. I you know, what am I doing and then you then you act like you don’t care. Oops, you bail on your material and everybody loses. So it’s a real lesson, you know, from doing it a long time, I guess or or maybe people learn it earlier, that you have to you know, Gary was so good at this just be in the moment or he struggled with it. And that’s how he got good at it. You know, you need that.


David Duchovny  10:25



Sarah Silverman  10:26

But I’m.


David Duchovny  10:28

Did, Gary would tell you that Don Rickles story about when he was in Vegas and.


Sarah Silverman  10:35

Tell it, tell it no.


David Duchovny  10:36

Younger comic, he’s Gary’s younger comic, he’s in Vegas and wrinkles, and is in the audience. And Gary, super excited. You know, Rickles, is the master. And afterwards, Rickles comes to the dressing room to say hi to him. And Gary’s like, what was was funny, and Rickles, said, did you feel funny? And I wonder if you, if you go through that as well, like, just like, that innate sense of like, well, I’m gonna persevere through this because I feel funny, I feel funny here.


Sarah Silverman  11:04

Yes, I mean, listen, when I feel funny, and it feels magical, and the audience is like, we’re kind of like as one and it’s, it’s so exciting. And it feels so good. And you should trust it and believe in it so what I’m about to say, I don’t want it to, like, take away from this. But it is interesting, you know, I, I want to say I just started recording myself on stage, probably in the past 10 years, I’ve been recording myself and it because it’s so hard to do because once you know you’re recording, even though you may never listen to it back, or if anyone listens to it back, it’s just you. But there’s something about when it’s recorded. It’s like why it’s hard to pull off magic or improv, on television, or on like, in you know, on a recorded piece and not live at work. Those are mediums that work live, and those like organic moments of connection are so exciting, especially for me, because I’m pretty good with the crowd, I’m good with the crowd, if they, you know, never yell out or this or that. But I’m not like Todd Berry or Tig Notaro or, you know, who like, they could do their whole set just doing crowd work. I mean, it’s so masterful, and there’s so they trust themselves. So completely in the moment, it’s like, I’m in awe of it.


David Duchovny  12:27

You know, I, I read about you, I didn’t know I mean, we’ve known each other a long time, but we don’t really know each other, you know, and we kind of had this connection through our beloved friend, Gary, which is deep, but we’ve never really exercised our friendship in that way. And so I read reading about you to talk to you today. And you know, I was very moved by how you started to tell jokes, kind of as a depressed child. You know, I thought of that word shock, you know, and that you you liked shocking people. And that was funny. And I thought of a little depressed girl. And it’s like, you’re trying to give yourself shock therapy in a way.


Sarah Silverman  13:12

That’s so interesting. Yeah, I mean, I think at yeah, when realizing that origin of like, being a comic that pedals in shock, because like, my dad was one of those dads that taught me curse words when I was three, and then I’d say them and I would get this wild approval from adults despite themselves and it made my arms itch with glee. And you get addicted to that. That kind of approval.


David Duchovny  13:44

What do you remember your first joke?


Sarah Silverman  13:46

Well, I just my dad taught me to say bitch bastard damn shit. And I yelled it in the middle of boys market in Manchester, New Hampshire, and people were horrified and it felt like love.


David Duchovny  14:00

You […], still a good one. I think he could still hit with that one. You know, I don’t know what kind of depression you had as a kid, whether it was the kind that would keep you in bed, or you know, or you were functional.


Sarah Silverman  14:16

I stopped going to school and I couldn’t be around my I went from being the most social kid where all my friends came over after school to like, not being able to imagine being normal and not just like wanting to be in bed and alone. Like I would see my friends just living life and be like, how do they do that? You know, without crumbling? It’s just I don’t know, it was and it was, you know, it was probably there was so much that wasn’t understood about depression stuff.


David Duchovny  14:54

What how did you conceive of yourself at that moment? I mean, what I’m good getting out in ways like when I’ve felt depression, it feels like failure to me, it feels like I’m failing as a human being, you know? I don’t have it, I don’t have it.


Sarah Silverman  15:10

Yeah, and it’s so much of like, um, what we live in is depression that’s like toiling about the past, you know, or anxiety, which is the what ifs of the future, even though we’ve never predicted anything that’s ever happened in our lives. But we think we can. And we get around the what if this? What if that what if this, that this is going to happen, this is going to happen? We tell ourselves horror stories, and the only option that’s healthy is to live in the moment. And then that’s just something we have to practice because nobody very few people have that down. But you know, so many times I’ll be like, Oh, God, I’ve got this and this and this tomorrow, and I don’t, you know, and then I’m like, wait a minute, am I am I okay, right now? Yeah, I’m on the couch with my favorite person and my dogs yeah, I’m fine.


David Duchovny  16:01

But when you’re a kid, you don’t have access to that kind of rational self talk?


Sarah Silverman  16:07



David Duchovny  16:08

It’s a beautiful adaptation, you know, that you’re still doing?


Sarah Silverman  16:14

Yeah, get some pretty amazing


David Duchovny  16:46

There are certain failures that like don’t get wrapped up, you know, that don’t get put away completely, they kind of resonate. And those, those are the tricky ones, you know, that live that live within you like, with my, my mom died about a year and a half ago. And well, she was 93, and.


Sarah Silverman  17:07

Well, I killed her.


David Duchovny  17:11

And she had dementia for quite a while. So it was it was merciful by the end, you know, so, but, you know, I could afford to take care of her. But I didn’t have the fortitude to physically take care of her, you know, or to spend the amount of time you know, when you think back of the amount of time that your, your parent gives you, you know, I didn’t give back a fraction of that time. And I instead I, I paid for other people to do it. You know, and this is a, for me a failure, you know, that lives within me that I can’t square, you know, in a way, when I was reading about how you cared for your dad, you know, and your stepmom. I thought that was such a healing thing for you to do for yourself, you know, as you were doing it for them, you know.


Sarah Silverman  18:13

It was it was kind of it was really hard with my stepmom because it was horrible death, she cancer and she wanted to live. Whereas my dad just wanted to be with her once she died, and one of them was totally unafraid of death and thrilled when I told him that the doctor had called me and said, your dad is dying, he needs to be in the hospital. And I said we we promised him no more hospital. And the doctor said, you know what, I think that’s great. Like, he’s going he’s going to die a painless death and he’s going to die from kidney failure, which happens to be a painless step. So I walk into my dad’s room and I go dad, great news, which was, you know, relative and I really, but you know, I was able to tell him, you’re gonna die and it’s gonna be painless. And he was so happy. We all just got into bed with them. And the last days were pretty great, you know?


David Duchovny  19:06

And you probably didn’t, did you feel the need to like litigate whatever? Anxieties or misses that you had in the past are?


Sarah Silverman  19:15

No, but like with my mom died eight years earlier, and I wasn’t. I was there for I wasn’t there.


David Duchovny  19:24

But the question is, like, how do we go about forgiving ourselves for that kind of a failure?


Sarah Silverman  19:29

Well, what do we how do we forgive our parents? We say, they did the best they could with what they were given, that’s what you did.


David Duchovny  19:37

Yeah, I’ve got you know, if I could extend myself that kind of generosity, it would be a good thing.


Sarah Silverman  19:43

Why not? It’s good for everyone too, you know, like, the more we what is it flagellate are, you know, we torture ourselves, the less space we even have for others. So it really is into a modest existence. It’s not modesty.


David Duchovny  20:00

It’s actually selfish, selfishly.


Sarah Silverman  20:03

All consuming, isn’t it?


David Duchovny  20:04

Yeah, and, you know, I didn’t have this with Gary, you know, and if you don’t mind talking about that a little. I did, you know, the week, or 10 days before he died, I was, I was emailing with him and he was going to come, you know, we’re going to take a walk. And as with Gary, you know, the day, it got to be two or three, and I hadn’t heard from him, and I made other plans or whatever. And he emailed it, like three and said, I guess the day got away, so let’s do it. You know, I mean, it’s classic, let’s do it in a couple of weeks. And in a couple of weeks, he was dead. And I know that Gary was, he was a lot sometimes, you know, and to be with him, was it, it was always worthwhile. But sometimes I just would feel like I needed to rest or whatever, I just couldn’t. And I couldn’t I couldn’t escape feeling, you know, that I that I had failed him in a way. And to me, not just in that in that day, but kind of as as a friend that didn’t know it. Because, you know, I mean, as you know, like when Gary had a job, it was all about that, you know, you talk to you about the jokes or whatever. If he was hosting the Emmys, it would be like six months of like, like super obsession with that job. And I would selfishly sometimes kind of pull back because I was like, I didn’t want to talk about the me jokes, or whatever, you know. And I wonder, I wonder what was it like for you, at that point when he died, and even before.


Sarah Silverman  21:44

I mean, similar, really similar, where I just, you know, that basketball was, like, the joy of those Sundays were just like, the joy of my life. But I, you know, in our relationship, we were close, but sometimes, it was hard to have the bandwidth for it all. And some and but, you know, he would make time for you. And it is, for, harder to make, you know, I wish I was better at being reciprocal. And in a lot of ways, I’m sure it was, but like, you know, there were times towards the end where it was hard to decipher his code a little bit. He’d say things that I don’t know if he was kidding or serious, I was kind of having a hard time getting him a little bit. And before he died, he was in the hospital for three weeks. And I had no idea. Like, whenever he was just gone, I assumed he was in Maui, because that was like his, he’d go there and just like, meditate for a month or something. So I, I didn’t check in and then when I found out he had been in the hospital that whole time I I had like, a real panic. And I called him upset and angry at him, you know, just silly, you know, but I was just like, you know, how did I not know about this, like, who’s your emergency contact? And he said, Bruce, and that made me feel better like that he has gone, you know, and, and, but I was, you know, it’s ego, I think more but it came from just caring about him. But I was so upset that that could even happen. And I not know, not just me, but any of us, you know? And he was very private in that way, you know?


David Duchovny  23:40



Sarah Silverman  23:40

With his health. He was very private. So like Bruce Grayson, who’s, you know, a very good friend, maybe when was best friends was his makeup artist and also played basketball with us and a friend all of us and, you know, kind of kept that secret for him, you know, under his own instruction, I’m sure. But, you know, God when I found out he died, I just I, you know, thinking about that he was alone is just very upsetting to me.


David Duchovny  24:12



Sarah Silverman  24:15

But, again, can’t really toil that much about it. It’s because it’s it’s done. It’s happened.


David Duchovny  24:28

And I think where you want to spend the time is like on the court, you know, remembering that now remembering Gary, before almost every game, saying my head is in.


Sarah Silverman  24:42



David Duchovny  24:42

Like if the ball hits his head.


Sarah Silverman  24:45

My head is […]


David Duchovny  24:46

Just silly shit like that. It’s just like it a warm feeling when I think about it. I remember Neil and doing a draft coach. Whoever believes, you’re getting a giraffe coach, come on, guys take a knee. Okay, here we go. We want to get back on D.


Sarah Silverman  25:05

Start nibbling on the tree leaves.


David Duchovny  25:07

Because he’s he’s the only guy tall enough to actually nibble on the trees.


Sarah Silverman  25:10

Is there anyone funnier than Kevin Nealon. I mean, Gary’s memorial […] I mean, he was sobbing and killing.


David Duchovny  25:22

Yeah, that’s, I guess that’s like the perfect stand up right to to sob and kill at the same time. Maybe, that maybe that’s where you’re heading, Sarah.


Sarah Silverman  25:33

Yeah, to write to like, open you know, bear your whole heart.


David Duchovny  25:38



Sarah Silverman  25:39

And, and kill?


David Duchovny  25:40

Yeah. I’ll tell you two things, Gary […] second third year X Files I just said I want to do SNL and I want to do Sanders because I love that show. And I would get the VHS tapes sent up to Vancouver. So can’t work comes back, Carrie loves you can do the show.


Sarah Silverman  25:58

And that’s how you met doing Sanders?


David Duchovny  26:01

Yeah, so I go there. And I watch him do a talk show segment. You know, I sit in the audience part. And he passes by me 10 times 15 times clearly has no fucking clue who I am. It does not love me at all does not know I walk upon the earth. And so then we, we go do a scene and I do meet him. And we do a scene in the hallway and my character gets bumped. And I’m an asshole actor. I don’t like to be bumped or whatever, and I’m misbehaving. And we do one take. And then they call cut. And Gary looks at me and he says, how old are you? And I said 32. And he goes, what took you so long? All right. And I tell you, it melted my heart because I wanted to exist in that world of funny performance, whatever, you know, I was doing. I was known for The X Files, which is not really that funny. And I just felt my soul was in this place. And here was the king of this world, to me. It was it was kind of a great put down. It was just just the best way to welcome me into the whole thing. I’ll never ever forget that. And then how did you guys meet?


Sarah Silverman  27:21

Dave drafted took me to basketball one Sunday. And I mean, I worshipped him. So it was like, took me a long time to be myself at all there.


David Duchovny  27:33

Too much.


Sarah Silverman  27:34

Didn’t want to shoot too much. Didn’t want to say too much was trying to be cool, you know?


David Duchovny  27:39

How do you how do you try to be cool during the basketball game? How’s that go?


Sarah Silverman  27:43

Well, I mean, just trying to be cool with him, like, make cool biting comments. And it wasn’t until I let myself be warm, and human that we connected, you know, you know, it’s like they’re a real friendship happened.


David Duchovny  28:01

Yeah, and you remember, you almost remember that as a moment, or that was just kind of a.


Sarah Silverman  28:08

I vaguely I remember kind of thinking like, I’m trying to act cool. And that’s not what he’s about. And what if I’m just you know, so we’re playing ping pong.


David Duchovny  28:21

Oh, he was a good ping pong player. People don’t know this.


Sarah Silverman  28:24

Yeah, I just asked after him, you know, like, when you’re trying to impress someone, something that is you don’t realize is you make it all about yourself. You know, I’m like this and I’m like, no, just be and take in them.


David Duchovny  29:15

When you decided to retire a certain kind of Sarah Silverman character, you know, when in the, in the beginning of the Trump years or whatever. Because you thought that no longer works. In this case, this no longer works. So can you can you talk to me about that?


Sarah Silverman  29:33

It wasn’t really a conscious like, hey, that stuff doesn’t work. So I’m gonna go a different way, I mean, I think I just very naturally started changing you know, in terms of like, my yeah, my first comedy special Jesus’s Magic is like, I’m Sarah Silverman, but I’m totally doing a character in that character. And it carried on into my Comedy Central show. This Sarah Silverman program is just was a an arrogant, ignorant. And so having Trump, when not that it carried that through all the way up until Trump was elected, but especially when Trump was elected and what? How the world changed in that way, that character was no longer really amusing to me, because he embodies that completely.


David Duchovny  30:23

Did you feel did you feel, was that just organic to you on the inside? Or did you feel that in relationship to an audience? That shift?


Sarah Silverman  30:32

No, no, I know it? No, no, it wasn’t like, wow, the audience isn’t laughing at my racist jokes anymore. Like, it’s, it’s just like, it is art, you know, it just like a painting on a wall in a museum. If you go and see it every single day, it changes because your life changes, your experiences change, and the world around us completely change. And so what you’re seeing is going to be inferred with a whole new set of, of perspective. And, you know, I mean, I learned this pretty early on, you know, that comedy really dies in the second guessing of your audience, that you really have to stay with what is funny to you, and that hopefully changes over time, because it means you’re you’ve grown or you’ve changed, or the world has changed, and you’ve changed with it, or the world has changed and you haven’t changed with it are all those different variables? You know, in some ways, the stuff I did doesn’t hold up because it’s, it comes from a, a white privilege that, you know, where, you know, listen, I watched that greatest night in pop, you know, the the, it was just so great that we are the world documentary, and they show prints winning that year 1984, an AMA Award for Best black artist, and I was stunned and mostly because stunned that that was an award, and stunned that. I’m sure I watched it and thought nothing of it. And if anything, thought it was you know, I wouldn’t have the word for it, like inclusive. And of course, that’s absurd. And it just goes to show that, you know, as much as we think we have progressed, and as woke as we are in this current moment, then we’re going to look back on it and go like, oh my God, we had Best Actress and Best Actor or you know, whatever. Like, we’ll see things that in a whole new way that we didn’t see right now.


David Duchovny  32:42

Yeah, I I’ve thought about that. And like, you know, to be judged by the future, as in my fantasies, obviously, as a meat eater. You know, like, I was like, oh, you know, she was a funny comic, but she was a meat eater.


Sarah Silverman  32:55

Yeah, but we can’t foresee it now. And we just weren’t we, you know, we we don’t know now what we don’t know. But and that’s part of the reason why I think it’s important to learn from the past and be changed from the past, at a cellular level, but to litigate the past is, to me, a less successful light, because all of us knew just only what we knew up to that point. And even though it’s embarrassing, looking back, the only thing really to be embarrassed about is if we don’t change from it, I try to I accept myself and all the shitty, stupid things I did up until now, you know.


David Duchovny  33:41

I’ve also read that you love apologizing. It’s not like


Sarah Silverman  33:44

I love apologizing. It’s just that I am not afraid to apologize when I’m wrong. If I’m sorry, I apologize always. And if I’m not sorry, I don’t apologize. It seems like a really good you know, way to live by it’s really simple and easy.


David Duchovny  34:02

I think you just have to acknowledge some kind of personal using the word again, a failure, apology, you know, I have failed you I have failed in some way. And it has to be sincere, but I also think, you know, I would rather like as a culture, focus on forgiveness as well. Like, how do we do that? You know, instead of like, okay, maybe I’m an expert apologizer I’ve certainly done a lot of apologizing in my life. But how am I forgiving? How do you work on that? How do you work on forgiving?


Sarah Silverman  34:34

By being able to accept yourself and forgive yourself. I know that sounds corny and textbook but there’s a reason for that. There’s a reason why that sounds right. But I mean, it’s, you know, until you can, people who don’t accept apologies, sincere apologies, probably have a hard time accepting themselves. My laptop is going to die. I have low battery, how much battery do I have left? Doesn’t tell you if you click on oh, well, we’ll just go if I suddenly hang up, it’s, I won’t. But it can I say one thing even this is off the air but.


David Duchovny  35:13



Sarah Silverman  35:14

Your struggle with how you feel about your parents at the end are failing them. You can maybe help yourself by thinking about how with your kids, you know, that they could never fail you. And that’s how your parents probably felt certainly your mother. Your father, but I mean, you know.


David Duchovny  35:34

That’s so true. I my kids could not fail me. They could not, thank you.


Sarah Silverman  35:45

Mic drop.


David Duchovny  35:48

Your battery is dying, so your your words are not actually synced up with what your meaning is. And I appreciate it. And I, I will, I will dwell on it later, thank you, I appreciate that.


Sarah Silverman  36:01

I love you.


David Duchovny  36:02

I love you too, Sarah. And thank you for doing this.


Sarah Silverman  36:05

It was really fun.


David Duchovny  36:06

Yeah, it was.


David Duchovny  36:19

All right, here we go, I wanted to talk a little about the Sarah Silverman podcast, but what am I trying to get better at? In these interviews? What am I trying to get? Am I trying to get an answer as to how to fail better? Because if anybody knew that, they would have told us, you know what I mean? If anybody could turn water into wine, they would have told us they would have done it. So it’s kind of a it’s a concept that I have that many of us have, that failure can be instructive and failure can be beautiful. But how, how do we do that alchemy? How do we go through the process of turning that lead into gold, you know? And obviously, I don’t know where I just tell you and my guests don’t know or they would have told you they would have patented it you know that’s that’s kind of the lie of the podcast is like oh, you’re you’re gonna learn? No, I don’t think we can learn except by experience, but we can have a glimmer because we’re never gonna get the answer. Alright, signing off.


CREDITS  37:48

There’s more Fail Better with Lemonada Premium. Subscribers get exclusive access to bonus content like more of my behind the scenes thoughts on this episode. Subscribe now and Apple podcasts. Fail Better as a production of Lemonada media in coordination with King Baby. It is produced by Kegan Zema, Aria Bracci, and Dani Matias. Our engineer is Brian Castillo. Our SVP of weekly is Steve Nelson. Our VP of new content is Rachel Neil. Special thanks to Carl Ackerman, Tom Karpinski and Kate D. Lewis, the show’s executive produced by Stephanie Wittels Wachs, Jessica Cordova, Kramer and me, David Duchovny, I mean, the company dammit. The music is also by me and my band. Lovely Colin Lee. Pat McCusker, Mitch Stewart, Davis Rowan and Sebastian […]. Special thanks to Brad Davidson. You can find us online at @LemonadaMedia and you can find me @DavidDuchovny, you know what it means when I say at David Duchovny. Follow Fail Better wherever you get your podcasts or listen ad free on Amazon music with your Prime membership.

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